LaMarcus Aldridge Talks Gregg Popovich, Spurs Contract Extension

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistOctober 17, 2017

San Antonio Spurs forward LaMarcus Aldridge (12) during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Indiana Pacers, Wednesday, March 1, 2017, in San Antonio. San Antonio Spurs won 100-99. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
Eric Gay/Associated Press

A one-on-one meeting with head coach Gregg Popovich over the summer helped LaMarcus Aldridge sign a three-year extension with the San Antonio Spurs.           

"I feel like the talks this summer were very constructive," Aldridge said Tuesday, per Michael C. Wright of ESPN.com. "I felt it was kind of needed, having the heart to heart where you just say how you feel. Pop has been great about the things that I've said I kind of needed or wanted. So far, it's been great."

Per Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.com, the power forward signed a three-year deal Monday worth $72.3 million.

Aldridge was under contract for one more season plus a player option for 2018-19, although it appeared his time in San Antonio was coming to an end.

According to ESPN's Ramona Shelburne and Wright, the Spurs were reportedly shoppingthe 32-year-old prior to the 2017 NBA draft on June 22, and several teams were interested in a potential trade. Sam Amick of USA Today noted the veteran was unhappy with the organization, leading to increased trade talks.

Aldridge said his extension talks with Popovich "came out of the blue" but later added: "I'm happy to have it behind me because it puts everything that happened this summer out of the door, and I feel like I'm going to be better this year." 

The forward averaged 17.3 points and 7.3 rebounds per game last season, his lowest marks since his rookie campaign with the Portland Trail Blazers in 2006-07. The down year helped break his streak of five straight All-Star appearances.

While Kawhi Leonard has become the go-to option with the Spurs, they still need Aldridge to be much better in order to contend in the Western Conference.     

                                     


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